Visiting Scholars and International Students

The Centre for Culture, Identity and Education (CCIE) brings scholars and international students to the University of British Columbia to share their research and understanding of a particular area or topic. Each visiting scholar or student presents a lecture on her or his research before departure.

Visiting Scholars

March 2022 – May 2023

Dr. Nilofar Shidmehr

Dr. Shidmehr is a bilingual author, creative-writing-informed research scholar, and educator. She teaches writing and courses in literature and cinema of modern Iran at Simon Fraser University. She has served three times as a Writer-in-Residence in different cities across Canada, the last of which was with McMaster University and Hamilton Public Library. She has published many peer-reviewed journal articles, book chapters, and seven books of poetry and fiction in English and Persian. Her areas of research include poetic and narrative inquiry, research-creation, individual and collective life writing, life history research, Iranian diaspora, human rights, immigration, identity, displacement, and belonging, as examined through a social, historical and cultural studies framework. In addition, she is also interested in qualitative research methodologies, film studies, and researching gender relations among Iranian immigrants, especially within adult education communities.

Dr. Shidmehr is currently a team member of a UK Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) funded research project that investigates the processes of identity transition of Iranian queer refugees, and explores how rigid Western categories of LGBTQ+ are imposed by immigration structures (immigration offices, UNHCR, NGOs) on those seeking asylum, to show how migrant subjects may be misrecognised, retraumatised, or silenced by the constraints of such classification. The project’s methodology is cross-disciplinary and combines life history interviews, hermeneutics, poetry creation, poetic inquiry, and documentary production. As for her part, she plans to contribute to the research process and final outputs through translating interviews from Persian into English, holding poetry workshops with participants, co-authoring a poetry booklet with them, writing journal articles and book chapters, and contributing to the production of a documentary film and a website.

March 2021 – May 2021

Professor Dolana Mogadime

Dr. Dolana Mogadime

Dolana Mogadime is a Full Professor in the Department of Educational Studies, Brock University in August 2020 she became the Faculty Chair of the President’s Advisory Committee on Human Rights, Equity, and Decolonization (PACHRED) for a term of up to 3 years, she is past PhD Program Director, 2017 – 2019 for the Joint PhD in Educational Studies Program (Brock Home University). Her research interests are in human rights and curriculum studies, critical sociology of education, equity studies and feminist theories. She has published in international and national academic journals and anthologies on topics such as; women in leadership; gender-based violence; human rights education; teachers life stories and commitments to equity in the curriculum; and human rights education.

Dolana has contributed toward several key initiatives that focus on advancing human rights in higher education. Among them, the Human Rights Task Force as Vice-Chair (2016-2017), the Antiracism Task Force, as Program Director (2015-2016), and The President’s Advisory Committee on Human Rights, Equity, and Decolonization (PACHRED) Transitional Committee (2017-2018). Several reports were produced because of this work as well as a co-edited double special issue in, ‘Brock Education: A Journal of Educational Research and Practice’ (2017) and Understanding and Dismantling Privilege (2017) journal with Abbey Ferber, PhD., University of Colorado. Within her capacity as Editor-in-Chief, Brock Education Journal, she has overseen 8 completed journal issue publications and worked side by side with an additional 3 special issue Guest Editors. Dolana continues to champion open access knowledge exchange on several fronts: On campus, at the university level; as well as national; and internationally. Her contributions have made a difference to both academic and professional learning communities.

Dolana was born in South Africa, in the city of Pretoria. She is an Indigenous scholar of Zulu and Sotho cultural backgrounds and has many honors attributed to her successes including Honorary Professor, University of the Free State, South Africa and Extra Ordinary Associate Professor of North West University, Faculty of Educational Studies, South Africa, and the 2018 Brock University Open Access Award (for her Equity work). Recently, she became the inaugural Visiting Scholar at the Canadian Museum for Human Rights (2018-2019). She is both Chair and Coordinator of the Teaching Nelson Mandela Advisory Committee, and project lead for the Canadian Museum for Human Rights and Brock University Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). She is working with colleagues and school leaders located throughout Ontario, as well as PhD and MEd students and alumni, on curriculum that will be used in Canadian schools on the life and legacy of Nelson Mandela. Dolana is the mother of two sons, both of whom graduated from Brock University. In her spare time, she enjoys writing poetry and contemplative nature walks.

January 2018 – August 2019

Dr. Pei Ran

Associate Professor and Director of Graduate Students at College of Humanities and Social Sciences, Harbin Engineering University, China.

Dr. Ran held discussions with Dr. Wright and others in EDST and beyond about multicultural education, international education and the internationalization of curriculum.  His discussions with CCIE and EDST member, Dr. Fei Wang were particularly productive around their mutual interest in BC overseas schools. As a result, Dr. Wright invited Dr. Wang to organize a panel to address this issue which was to include Dr. Ran as a speaker.

2015 – 2017

Dr. Jennifer Kelly

Jennifer Kelly, Professor at University of Alberta

Dr. Kelly’s areas of research include, racialization, immigration and citizenship as examined through a social historical and cultural studies framework. She plans to complete research and writing based on my SSHRC funded research project. Her theoretical framework/orientation is a cross disciplinary approach through cultural studies, sociology and adult education. In addition to racialization, immigration and citizenship, she is interested in researching identity formation among African diasporic youth and within adult education communities.

During her visit she plans to undertake research at several archives in Vancouver to ascertain the links between African Canadian families and communtities in Alberta and BC during the 1900s through to 1960s. She is interested in understanding the work of the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters who had an active branch in Vancouver. As a terminus for the CPR Vancouver is an apt site for exploration of this topic. She also plans to complete a book manuscript based on data generated through her research on racialization, immigration and citizenship.

Sept – Oct 2017

Dr. Ana Cruz

Ana Cruz, a native of Brazil, Professor, Social & Behavioral Sciences,at St. Louis Community College, U.S.A.

Dr. Cruz work is at the interesting intersection of critical pedagogy, multicultural/international education, music and deafness. She is an expert on the work of Paulo Freire and interested in the application of a combination critical pedagogy and cultural studies to deaf studies and deaf education.  She worked with me on articulating the formation of cultural studies of education (and for her its application in deaf studies) as well as multiculturalism and critical pedagogy (with my work being more general critical pedagogy and her’s Freirean). She also met with others in the department interested in social justice education in Brazil (Vanessa Andreotti) and in Freirean pedagogy (Sam Rocha).  The CCIE urged her to present her work with others on a panel rather than giving the traditional individual presentation and she readily agreed. The CCIE therefore organized a panel on which she presented the keynote, with parallel papers by a colleague from EDST and visiting professor at ECPS from State University of Rio de Janeiro, with a professor from EDST acting as discussant.




Dr. Alireza Sadeghi

Assistant professor in curriculum Studies, at Allameh Tabataba‘i University (ATU), Tehran, Iran.

Dr. Sadeghi was interested in Canadian multiculturalism and multicultural education and in working with me on those topics and how they might influence diversity education in Iran.  He worked with me and met several Iranian students and members of the Iranian community in Vancouver to address similarities and differences between school and university education in Iran and Canada, including and especially around sociocultural diversity.  Visiting scholars usually give an individual presentation of their work organized by the CCIE. In the case of Dr. Sadeghi he had met and conversed with Iranian Canadians and it seemed appropriate to organize a panel on the topic of . He presented the keynote paper and a group of UBC Iranian students and graduates (all CCIE members) and one from University of Calgary gave papers, either in direct response to his keynote or on related topics.

2015 – 2017

Dr. Dan Cui

Dr. Dan Cui was the SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellow at the Centre for Culture, Identity and Education, 2015-2017, under supervision of Dr. Handel Kashope Wright on the project “International Students Pathways to Immigration: The Role of Employment Experiences”. Dr. Dan Cui is currently an assistant professor in the Department of Child and Youth Studies. She received her PhD degree in the Department of Educational Policy Studies at the University of Alberta.  Currently, she holds several funded research projects, including integration of racialized minority immigrant youth in Canada and the United States; immigration and employment transition of international students; and Asian Canadians studies.

May 2013 – May 2014


Dr. Li Juan

School of International Education, Ningxia University, China

Li Juan is a scholar and instructor at the School of International Education, Ningxia University, where she teaches and conducts research on issues of cross cultural communication involving language learners of Chinese and English. She is interested in alternative national approaches to addressing language learning and cross cultural communication and has spent a year as a visiting scholar at the Centre for Culture, Identity and Education (CCIE) focusing on the concepts and practice of Canadian interculturalism and multiculturalism. During her research period at the CCIE she has also formulated a research project that will involve investigating religion and inter-faith communication in the Chinese context.

November – December 2012

Professor Mikko Lehtonen

Professor Mikko Lehtonen

School of International Education, Ningxia University, China

Mikko Lehtonen is Professor of Media Culture at the University of Tampere, Finland. He is the Director of the project New reading communities, new ways of reading. Lehtonen has published extensively in areas of cultural theory and media (see e.g. The Cultural Analysis of Texts, Sage 2000).

November – December 2010

Kris Rutten

Dr. Kris Rutten
Department of Educational Studies, Ghent University, Belgium

Kris Rutten studied Comparative Cultural Studies and obtained a PhD in Educational Studies with the dissertation entitled The rhetorical and narrative turn. Explorations in education. He is currently working as a research and teaching assistant at the Department of Educational Studies of Ghent University. In current research, he is exploring what it implies to approach education from a rhetorical and cultural studies perspective. Specifically, by elaborating on issues of identity and identification. He is co-organizer of the inaugural Summer Institute of the Association for Cultural Studies on Critical Literacies, to be held in Ghent in July 2011.

July – August 2010

Neda Forghani-Arani

Dr. Neda Forghani-Arani

Department of Education and Human Development, University of Vienna, Austria

Neda Forghani-Arani is research associate and lecturer at the Department of Education and Human Development, University of Vienna, Austria. Her teaching and research work focus on global education, intercultural education, teacher education, teacher research, reflective pedagogy, alterity and the lived experience of foreignness. Her publications on global education are recognized as pioneer work in the Austrian context. She is a member of the editorial board of the International Journal of Development Education and Global Learning. Neda was a visiting scholar at the CCIE in July and August 2010 working on two research projects, 1) “Teachers’ experiences of cultural foreignness and otherness”, a hermeneutic phenomenological study of the lived experience of teachers in intercultural situations, and 2) “Intercultural competence and pedagogical tact, Teachers’ narratives of handling cultural heterogeneity”, drawing on the German tradition of pedagogy and re-defining intercultural competence in terms of the Herbartian construct of pedagogical tact.

December 2009 – January 2010

Dr. Manuel Sevilla
Pontificia Universidad Javeriana, Departamento de Comunicación y Lenguaje, Cali, Colombia, South America

Manuel Sevilla is an Assistant Professor at Universidad Javeriana in Cali, Colombia. His current research interests are in the cultural production of music, economy of culture, and history of media. Since 2005 Dr. Sevilla has worked with migrant musicians from the Colombian Caribbean coast and traditional musicians from Afro-Colombian peasant communities in southern Colombia. His recent publications are on traditional music and cultural production, collective identity, and economy of culture. He is an amateur musician and a member of MartinaPombo, a group of academics and artists that develops alternative ways to communicate research results through music, photography, and paintings. He also does consulting work for the Colombian Ministry of Culture in the area of teaching of traditional music. Dr. Sevilla was a visiting scholar at the CCIE on a research grant awarded through the “Understanding Canada” Program, to undertake research on the relationship between musical diversity, multiculturalism and music education in Canada.

April 2009

Sue Saltmarsh

Dr. Sue Saltmarsh
Charles Sturt University Faculty of Education Bathurst, NSW, Australia

Dr. Saltmarsh is a Senior Lecturer in the School of Teacher Education at Charles Sturt University, where she lectures in Cultural Politics of Education and Qualitative Research Methods. She is a member of the Research Institute for Professional Practice, Learning & Education (RIPPLE) and also coordinates the Graduate Certificate in Educational Research/Bachelor of Educational Research (Honours) program. Her doctoral thesis, Complicit Institutions: Representation, Consumption and the Production of School Violence, was awarded the 2005 Australian Association of Research In Education Doctoral Thesis Award, and the Macquarie University Vice Chancellor’s Award for Academic Excellence. Her research interests concern discursive formations of the self and social relations, with particular emphasis on the intersection of economic discourse and its function in relation to children and childhood, institutional and interpersonal violence and the cultural production of social identities. She is also conducting research in the field of higher education, investigating the ways that commodification of higher education impacts on institutional cultures and scholarly ethics. Her research utilises social semiotic, ethnographic and critical discourse analytic methods, and is informed by poststructuralist theories of power, knowledge, subjectivity and agency as these relate to a range of educational and social issues.

October 2007

Dr. Ien Ang

Professor Ien Ang
University of Western Sydney, Australia

Professor Ien Ang, one of the leaders in cultural studies worldwide, will be visiting the Centre in October 2007.  She comes to CCIE from the University of Western Sydney, where she is an Australian Research Council Professorial Fellow (ARC) and the founding director of the Centre for Cultural Research, one of the most dynamic research centres in its field.   Professor Ang’s research focuses on cultural difference and diversity in a globalising world, migration and ethnicity, and popular culture in Australia and Asia.  She is the author of several highly acclaimed books, including Watching Dallas, Desperately Seeking the Audience and On Not Speaking Chinese.   Currently, as an ARC Professorial  Fellow, Professor Ang is exploring the theoretical and practical implications of notions of ‘cultural complexity’, in a research program entitled ‘Cultural Research for the 21st Century: Building Cultural Intelligence for a Complex World’.   She also currently is collaborating with Associate Professor Gay Hawkins (UNSW) on an ARC Linkage project with the Special Broadcasting Service (SBS), entitled ‘SBS and Australian Cultural Democracy’.

October – November 2007

Dr. Jody Berland

Dr. Jody Berland
York University

Dr. Jody Berland will be taking up residence as a visiting scholar at the Centre this upcoming Fall.  Dr. Berland is an Associate Professor and a member of the graduate programs in Communication and Culture, the Humanities, the Department of Music, and the Graduate Programme of Social and Political Thought.  Her teaching and research interests include cultural theory; Canadian communication theory; cultural studies of nature, science, technology and the environment; music and the media; space and place.  In addition to publishing on such a wide range of topics, Dr. Berland is also one of three North American representatives to the international board of the Association of Cultural Studies. She also serves as editor of Topia: Canadian Journal of Cultural Studies, published by University of Toronto Press and edited at York. Currently, she is completing a book-length manuscript on culture, technology and space, entitled North of Empire: Culture and the Technologies of Space.

Dr. George Sefa Dei

Professor George Dei
Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, University of Toronto | April 2007

Professor Dei gave the keynote address at the day-long symposium Multiculturalism With(out) Guarantees: The Anti-Racism Alternative, which took place on April 2, 2007. Professor Dei is professor and chair of the Department of Sociology and Equity Studies at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education.  His teaching and research interests include  anti-racism education, development education, indigenous knowledge and anti-colonial thought. In addition to his scholarly contributions, he serves on the boards of a number of organizations, including the Ghanaian-Canadian Union where he serves as president, the Harry Jerome Scholarship Awards of Canada, the Central Neighbourhood House and the Black Secretariat. He is also a member of Tractors for Our Daily Bread, Unemployed Professional Men, Black Educators Working Group, Cross-Edge Network and Uhuru Collective at OISE, University of Toronto.

Dr. Siri Gamage

Dr. Siri Gamage
University of New England, Australia | October 2006

Professor Gamage, an Associate of CCIE, was a visiting scholar at the Centre in October 2006. During his tenure, Dr. Gamage gave a presentation entitled “Changing Nature of Australian Multiculturalism and its implications for Ethic Minorities and Education: Critical Reflections.” In Australia, Dr. Gamage is cross appointed between the School of education and the School of Professional Development and Leadership at the University of New England, where he teaches multiculturalism and multicultural education, immigrant studies, and the social context of schooling. His research interests range from globalization, intercultural studies, critical multicultural and race theory to social context of education and multiculturalism across countries.

Dr. Michael Singh

Professor Michael Singh
University of Western Sydney, Australia | March 2006

Professor Singh was a visiting scholar at CCIE in March 2006. During his tenure, he participated in Centre events and gave a presentation, entitled “Identity Conversion, Citizenship, and Social Studies: Asian-Australian Perspectives on Indigenous Reconciliation and Human Right.” Professor Singh undertakes comparative cultural studies research in the interdependent areas of education and training, and the multiple levels for effecting reform, so as to explore the intersections of urban, regional and international relations, and is interested in issues of meta-learning. In addition to his research contributions, Professor Singh has worked as a primary school teacher, teacher-librarian and curriculum consultant, as well as providing leadership as head of initial teacher education, head of a school of languages and international studies, and pro-vice chancellor for research and academic affairs. Professor Singh is an associate of CCIE.


Visiting International Students

coming soon